"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Friday, September 5, 2014


Just watched a video of a middle-aged disabled woman opening the door of her residence to a Delaware County Deputy Derek Bowie holding a TASER gun in her face.

After that, according to her report, she was overpowered by the Deputy Sheriff Derek Bowie and has bruises to show for that, I personally saw the bruises.

When the woman came outside to videotape what Deputy Bowie was doing, he got into a vehicle, backed up at the woman with a door of his vehicle open and obviously intentionally slammed the door of his vehicle into the tablet with which the woman was videotaping him, nearly knocking her over with his vehicle.

Only, regrettably for Deputy Bowie, the video was not destroyed by his trick.  By the way, he says on that video that he is making his own video.  I wonder if he was lying or not, because in my experience as a criminal defense attorney, police officers in several local counties, including Delaware, never videotape their arrests - this way it is their word against the word of the suspect, and you can guess who wins if a judge determines credibility, which is what happens at the so-called pre-trial hearings in criminal court, and in Family Court there are no jury trials by statute.

But wait a minute?

Isn't it a vehicular assault on the woman? Isn't it an attempt to murder? In my legal opinion, yes, it is.  Backing up a car in order to smash into a tablet that a woman holds could have knocked her dead or left her severely injured.

Was it an assault with a taser?  In my legal opinion, yes, it was, the woman did not present any threat of violence and did not resist anything.  She actually opened the door to Deputy Bowie - and saw a taser gun looking her in the face, and a child behind her watched that.

Will Delaware County District Attorney charge its own Deputy Sheriff for his misconduct?  I highly doubt it.

Yet, it is this kind of police misconduct that breeds contempt in people about the law.

Is it called good training of personnel of Delaware County?

By the way, this is not the first case I know where taser guns were used inappropriately.  I know of at least one more such case, where taser guns were used on a woman in front of her three young children, in the middle of the night, for no reason whatsoever, by officer John Demeo. 

John Demeo at that point worked for the Walton Village police, and I've heard from more than one person that John Demeo had anger problems.  Was he fired?  No. 

He was promoted and now not only he is a Deputy Sheriff of Delaware County in its drug enforcement unit, but he is the only officer handling such a deadly "assault weapon" as a German Shepherd. 

People who know this breed will tell you that German Shepherds need handlers with extremely even temperament.  John Demeo is definitely not that person - and I can judge because I cross-examined him and saw his reactions.  If he was ready to burst at me during cross-examination, if he tasered an innocent young mother who gave him no resistance, in front of her kids, and tasered a kid together with the mother, I can only imagine what a deadly combination is John Demeo with a German Shepherd.

The Delaware County uses tasers since 2008 and claims all of its officers are fully trained to use them.

In 2010, Delaware County Sheriff's Department claimed that in 98.5% of arrests TASERS are not required and are used to reduce the risk of injuries to the officer and the suspect.

The woman in question was not the suspect.

The officer who held the TASER to her face when she opened the door did not have a reason to believe that he will be met with violence.  There were not and never have been guns in that house.  In my assessment, it was pure harassment.

Here, the TASER was used because the father (a former U.S. Marine) who was picking up the child from visitation, asked the officers to come and get the child.  The father came to the house, because the mother texted to him to come, that she is packing the child and getting her ready for the transfer.

And the father, who hates the mother with a passion, brought police with him for a peaceful transfer.

I doubt that this particular situation fell into the 1.5% of cases where a TASER needed to be used.  It appears by at least the cases I know that TASERS are used by police officers within Delaware County against helpless women where there is no expectation of risk of injury to the officer.

As an example, the TASER gun was reportedly used by Delaware County Deputies this year against a person who allegedly "refused to comply with the duties of the Walton Dog Control officer", whatever those duties were.

By the way, the middle-aged woman in question did not refuse to comply with anything, in fact, the officer asked her to open the door, and she did - and saw the TASER gun right in her face.

The woman in question is also disabled, her wrists were broken, and the officer who pointed a TASER into her face, as far as I know, knew or should have known about it, as she is a well-known local, retired and on disability from the State of New York, with no criminal record and no history of gun use.

And, by the way, there was no reason for the officer to come to the house with a TASER into the grandmother's face, other than that on September 1, 2014 the woman's daughter has filed a misconduct complaint against a Family Court judge, Judge Frank B. Revoir, Jr. whose orders obviously in retaliation for the complaint, the Deputy Sheriff was carrying out.

What a coincidence.

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